review for The Three Musketeers on AllMovie

The Three Musketeers (1993)
by Lisa Kropiewnicki review

Director Stephen Herek's is a less sophisticated, more modern adaptation of Alexandre Dumas' (pere) novel than its definitive counterpart, The Three Musketeers (1973), directed by Richard Lester. Herek is no stranger to farce, having directed Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989), Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead (1991), and The Mighty Ducks (1992), but for such a classic story, this one is produced a little too Disney for its own good: too clean, too colorful, and too fluffy to be taken seriously. The baby-faced Chris O'Donnell never really embraces the spirit of D'Artagnan, delivering dialogue in his own flat Midwestern accent. Sutherland and Sheen give only adequate performances compared to Oliver Platt, whose witty and fun-loving character Porthos steals the show, along with Tim Curry, who plays a believably evil Cardinal Richelieu. Watered down and dandified for modern audiences clearly being underestimated by the Disney marketing machine, this version of the swashbuckling classic has high-quality costuming, cinematography, and production design, but little underneath its burnished exterior.